WEEK 16: HoopDirt.com Coach of the Week presented by Just Play Solutions

Story: Adam Nelson (@HD_DirtKing)

Congratulations to the following coaches who have been selected as the Week 16 HoopDirt.com Coach of the Week presented by Just Play Solutions. These coaches are now eligible to receive the HoopDirt.com National Coach of the Year Award presented by Just Play Solutions which will be announced at the conclusion of the 2023-24 college basketball season.

This is the ninth season that HoopDirt.com has run the Coach of the Week and Coach of the Year programs. The list of 2023-24 Coach of the Week winners, as well as the list of all-time COY winners can be found following this week’s honorees.

To nominate coaches for future weeks, please email [email protected] with your selection(s).

The week 16 winners are:

D1: Tevon Saddler – Nicholls State

Weekly record (overall): 2-0 (15-12)

Past week’s results: 89-77 W at New Orleans, 85-70 W vs Texas A&M-Commerce

Highlights: With two more wins last week, Saddler’s squad now sits at victories 15 on the season – that is now a NSU program record for wins for a first-year head coach in their Division I era. Saddler, the youngest D1 head coach in the country, who is part of the youngest D1 staff in the country, also set the NSU program mark for Southland Conference wins by a first year head coach with 10 (and counting). The Colonels are current tied for 2nd place in the league, and are 9-2 at home this year.

NCAA D2: Andre Cook – St. Edwards University

Weekly record (overall): 2-0 (20-9)

Past week’s results: 91-84 W vs Lubbock Christian, 88-87 W vs #1 West Texas A&M

Highlights: A monster week for Cook and SEU as they knocked off the two top teams in the Lone Star Conference west division, including taking down the #1 team in the country. The Hilltoppers won a battle with Lubbock Christian 91-84 on Thursday in a game where they went 12-22 (54%) from 3, and shot 51.7% from the field. On Saturday, they ended NCAA D1 #1 West Texas A&M’s 22-game winning streak, and handed them their first LSC loss of the season in an 88-87 thriller. SEU trailed by 1 with under :40 seconds remaining in the game. Thanks to a tip-in off of a miss, and a two defensive stops, they were able to pull off the upset.

NCAA D3: Mike Tully – Roger Williams University

Weekly record (overall): 3-0 (14-14)

Past week’s results: 84-74 W at Wentworth, 86-80 W at Nichols, 79-76 W vs Suffolk

Highlights: What a week for Tully and RWU, as they entered the Commonwealth Coast Conference Tournament as the #5 seed, three games under .500, and on a four game losing streak. The Hawks knocked off #4 Wentworth on the road to open the tourney on Tuesday 84-74. Facing CCC #1 seed Nichols (22-4, 15-1) on Thursday, RWU was able to take the lead on a 3-point play with 1:58 remaining, and went on a 9-0 run over the next minute plus to seal the upset. The Hawks completed the magical week by beating #6 Suffolk 79-76 on Saturday to capture the program’s first CCC Championship since 1998-99, and the first for Tully during his tenure at Roger Williams.

NAIA: Jesse McClung – Saint Mary-of-the-Woods College

Weekly record (overall): 2-0 (23-5)

Past week’s results: 76-74 W vs Brescia, 87-68 W at Oakland City

Highlights: First-year head coach McClung and SWMC capped off their regular season with a 23-5 record, and finished a top the River States Conference standings at 17-1. This is one of the best turnarounds in college basketball this season, as the Pomeroys, competing in just their third season ever won just three games in 2021-22, and ten games last season. Entering the RSC tourney, which starts this week, SMWC is on a nine game winning streak, and sit at 12-1 at home on the season.

JUCO: Stu Engen – North Dakota State College of Science

Weekly record (overall): 3-0 (29-1)

Past week’s results: 86-77 vs Dakota College at Bottineau, 91-63 W vs Williston St., 82-71 W at United Tribes

Highlights: With three more wins last week, Engen and his NJCAA D1 #23 Wildcats have run their winning streak to 27 games, with their last (and only loss) coming back on November 5th. Their 29 wins on the season include a 16-0 home record, and a 10-0 away record – their only loss occurred on a neutral court. The Wildcats, who captured the Mon-Dak conference Championship, are currently averaging 83.5 ppg while allowing just 62.4ppg (5th in the nation defensively). Over the past two seasons, Engen has led NDSCS to a 59-3 record.

2023-24 HoopDirt.com / Just Play Solutions Coach of the Week Winners

Week 1

NCAA DI: Mark Byington – James Madison University
NCAA DII: Alfred Jordan – Clark Atlanta University
NCAA DIII: Caleb Kimbrough – Hampden-Sydney College
NAIA: Darnell Archey – University of Mobile
JUCO: Kris Baumann – Odessa College

Week 2

NCAA DI: Ritchie McKay – Liberty University
NCAA DII: Mark Kuntz – Post University
NCAA DIII: Eric Bridgeland – University of Redlands
NAIA: Dannton Jackson – Talladega College
JUCO: Dillon Hargrove – National Park College

Week 3

NCAA DI: David Ragland – Evansville University
NCAA DII: Jordan Fee – Gannon University
NCAA DIII: Anthony Medina – University of St. Thomas (TX)
NAIA: Chase Teichmann – Florida College
JUCO: Hayden Sowers – South Plains College

Week 4

NCAA DI: Damon Stoudamire – Georgia Tech
NCAA DII: John Ellenwood – Ashland University
NCAA DIII: Brandon Linton – Tufts University
NAIA: Matt O’Brien – Southwestern College
JUCO: Darren Stratton – Northern Essex CC

Week 5

NCAA DI: Bryce Drew – Grand Canyon University
NCAA DII: Bob Pietrack – Fort Lewis College
NCAA DIII: Michael McSloy – Drew University
NAIA: Tigh Compton – University of Pikeville
JUCO: Terrell Harris – Prince George’s CC

Week 6

NCAA DI: Danny Sprinkle – Utah State University
NCAA DII: Artis Mattox – Benedict College
NCAA DIII: Dave Macedo – Virginia Wesleyan University
NAIA: Chris Wright – Langston University
JUCO: Joey Cantens – Daytona State College

Week 7

NCAA DI: Christmas Holiday – no winner selected
NCAA DII: Christmas Holiday – no winner selected
NCAA DIII: Christmas Holiday – no winner selected
NAIA: Christmas Holiday – no winner selected
JUCO: Christmas Holiday – no winner selected

Week 8

NCAA DI: Shaka Smart – Marquette University
NCAA DII: Bryan Rooney – Cal State East Bay
NCAA DIII: Todd McGuinness – Case Western Reserve University
NAIA: Scott Moore – Grace College
JUCO: Steve DeMeo – Northwest Florida State College

Week 9

NCAA DI: Shaheen Holloway – Seton Hall University
NCAA DII: Matt Majkrzak – Northern Michigan University
NCAA DIII: Jimmy Smith – Trinity College (TX)
NAIA: Josh Pickens – Lawrence Tech
JUCO: Matt Lee – Herkimer College

Week 10

NCAA DI: Darian DeVries – Drake University
NCAA DII: Dave Moore – University of West Georgia
NCAA DIII: D.P. Harris – Saint Vincent College
NAIA: Dee Brown – Roosevelt University
JUCO: Ryan Miley – Hocking College

Week 11

NCAA DI: Amir Abdur-Rahim – University of South Florida
NCAA DII: Mike Nestor – Lock Haven University
NCAA DIII: Dave Klatsky – NYU
NAIA: Robert Ford – Saint Xavier University
JUCO: Donnie Tyndall – Chipola College

Week 12

NCAA DI: Lamont Paris – University of South Carolina
NCAA DII: Vinay Patel – Angelo State University
NCAA DIII: Matt Hunter – York College (PA)
NAIA: Josh Gamblin – Mid-America Christian University
JUCO: Nick Ramos – Rock Valley College

Week 13

NCAA DI: Alan Huss – High Point
NCAA DII: Justin Wieck – Minnesota Duluth
NCAA DIII: Josh Merkel – Randolph-Macon College
NAIA: Delton Deal – Southwestern Assemblies of God University
JUCO: Robert Byrd – Kilgore College

Week 14

NCAA DI: Grant Billmeier – NJIT
NCAA DII: Tom Brown – West Texas A&M
NCAA DIII: Don Friday – Penn State Harrisburg
NAIA: Marcus “Chief” Bryant – Keiser University
JUCO: Mike Smelkinson – Howard Community College

Week 15

NCAA DI: Dan Hurley – UConn
NCAA DII: Mac McConnell – Texas A&M International
NCAA DIII: B.J. Dunne – Gettysburg College
NAIA: Kory Alford – Huntington University
JUCO: Franklin Chatman – Paul D. Camp Community College

Previous HoopDirt.com Coach of the Year Award Winners:

Division I

Division II

Division III



  • 2022-23Rick Cabrera – Tallahassee Community College
  • 2021-22Greg Heiar – Northwest Florida State
  • 2020-21: COVID Season – No winner selected
  • 2019-20: Randy Casey – Milwaukee Area Technical College
  • 2018-19: Billy Gillispie – Ranger College
  • 2017-18: Paul Cisek – Brookdale Community College
  • 2016-17: Todd Lorensen – Southwestern Community College
  • 2015-16: Craig Doty – Rock Valley College